Optimum burn scheduling for low-thrust orbital transfers

R. G. Melton, K. M. Lajoie, J. W. Woodburn

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper


This paper describes a method for optimizing the point at which thrust should be initiated on each passage of a multiple, low-thrust, finite duration perigee burn ascent trajectory. The quantity being minimized is the rotation of the line of apsides. The method is semi-analytic, requiring only a simple root-finding routine for the numerical portion of the solution. A simple perturbation solution is used to model the flight path during the burn, yielding a “burn-on” position with a maximum error of approximately 2%.

Original languageEnglish (US)
StatePublished - Jan 1 1986
EventAstrodynamics Conference, 1986 - Williamsburg, United States
Duration: Aug 18 1986Aug 20 1986


OtherAstrodynamics Conference, 1986
CountryUnited States


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics

Cite this

Melton, R. G., Lajoie, K. M., & Woodburn, J. W. (1986). Optimum burn scheduling for low-thrust orbital transfers. Paper presented at Astrodynamics Conference, 1986, Williamsburg, United States.